Well it would seem that the anglophone supremacists driving the anti-Irish agenda in Fine Gael and the Labour Party are preparing themselves for a major victory as the legislation within the Gaeltacht Bill 2012 is likely to be rammed through Dáil Éireann with barely a breath for democratic, legislative or judicial accountability. Stage one of the final solution to Ireland’s Irish-speaking communities and citizens was achieved with the proposed scrapping of the separate office and role of the Language Commissioner. Stage two, the new Gaeltacht Bill, is about to be passed into law. Stage three, the gutting of the Official Languages Act of 2003, is a work in progress. Stage four, the degradation of the Irish language in the national education system is in preparation.
Stage five? The alteration of the status of the Irish language in the Constitution of Ireland as the sole national and first official language of the state?
From the Galway Independent:
“Galway West Fianna Fáil TD Éamon Ó Cuív has expressed concern that the Government is attempting to force its controversial Gaeltacht Bill through the Houses of the Oireachtas without allowing sufficient time for debate.
The Bill was last week guillotined in the Seanad with just ten per cent of the proposed amendments debated and committee and remaining stages look set to be rushed through before the summer recess.
Deputy Ó Cuív said that is quite clear that the Government is trying to force this controversial piece of legislation through the Houses of the Oireachtas “without allowing enough time for public scrutiny and debate”.
Referring to the bill as it stands as “fundamentally flawed”, he said it is in desperate need of amendment.
He added that the bill spells an end of the democratic elections to the board of Údarás na Gaeltachta, giving powers to the Gaeltacht Minister to appoint many of the board members himself. The remainder of the board will be nominated by County Councillors, “many of whom have no connection with the Gaeltacht whatsoever”.
Deputy Ó Cuív’s concerns have been echoed by Sinn Féin Senator Trevor Ó Clochartaigh, who said there is a great deal of concern among many quarters at what is contained in the Bill, not just among political parties, but also among Irish language organisations, and within Gaeltacht communities.”
Meanwhile, a bit of meaningless window-dressing to distract the masses that proves just how hollow and empty the proposed new legislation will be. Via the Galway News:
“Galway is to become Ireland’s only “Gaeltacht Service City” as part of government plans to enhance the role of the Irish language.
The proposal is part of the Gaeltacht Bill which is being debated and voted on in the Dáil this week.
The measure provides for key support areas such as Galway City, Dingle and Dungarvan to be designated as “Gaeltacht Service” areas.
Speaking to Galway Bay fm news, Galway West Deputy Sean Kyne says Galway would have a key role to play as Ireland’s only service city.”
Role? What role? How is anything going to change? What does “Service City” actually mean? The truth is no one really knows because it is an utterly meaningless, bureaucrat-speak title devoid of any substance.
English Ireland is trying to achieve what English Britain never could. The final death knell of Irish Ireland.
What are your suggestions for resisting this?
Very few, I’m afraid. A majority FG/Lab government with policies on the Irish language and Irish civil rights shaped and driven by an anglophone extreme within their parties (backed by hostile anglophone media and business establishments), indifference from the ULA and Independents, only FF and SF leading the opposition (some out of genuine belief, some for opportunist ones), it seems likely to be passed free of any meaningful amendments.
Páid Ó Donnchú has a petition, online, for what its worth.
Personally I see little that can be achieved through the traditional forms of lobbying and glad-handing engaged in by Irish language rights groups.
The Irish-speaking communities need to move beyond that and take a leaf out of the experiences of activists in Wales and Québec. Peaceful direct action, use of the ballot box, putting the politicians on the line and using what laws that exist to badger and harangue the powers that be. Every Irish-speaking citizen should complain when denied services or when they see abuses of the law or regulations. Even the most innocuous of items, like a road-sign in English only where it should be bilingual, should be formally complained about.
What Irish needs is a fighting fund and the best legal team that money can buy. Publicise it, advertise it, and then hit everything and everywhere until the system collapses under the weight of its own discrimination and failings.
That would be just one idea.
Just let me know where to send the cheque, Séamas and who to write!
Working on it 😉
look im sorry guys but when very few people speak a difficult language i mean what practical solutions are there apart from the way its taught within schools, is there any point foisting it upon others who can’t understand what people say in irish. Have nothing against the language but im not sure how retaining official status is goin to change one thing.
Marc O Misteail
But this is the true state of the Irish language. A living community language for tens of thousands of Irish citizens. Yet this is the discrimination they face from their own state – a state where legally their language is the sole national and first official language of the state. This is not about how the language is taught in schools or anywhere else. This is about Irish-speaking citizens being treated as pariahs within their own state. And all at the behest of a small but influential minority of English-speaking bigots.
The vast majority of Irish people are quite content to accept a bilingual Ireland. It is a minority of anglophone supremacists who are driving the continued policies of institutionalised discrimination against Irish speakers.
Sooner or later that draconian bias is going to draw a response. And one proportional to that which has been inflicted on the Irish-speaking communities.
It wasnt that long ago that the Gaelige speaking Queen of England was forcing her Gaelige speaking Gardai to take Tri colors off Irish citizens in Dublin streets,streets that ran red with the blood of real patriots many of them without a word of this language increasingly the preserve of the wealthy and radical. Save the Tri color might be the next campaign …Ta mo gaeilge uafaseach..go mo leis sceal
Maybe we should move the other at risk languages out to the Gaelthacht. Maybe the Galway African Carribean community and Swahilii and also Urdu Punjabi and so forth . The Gaelthachts were established to preserve languages at risk … They would need to consider sharing the space and ideaology of language preservation with others whom face similar risks in Ireland …maybe they would have more support. A mosque or two possibly?